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Memories of Japan’s Lost War

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image of Journal of American-East Asian Relations

On 28 March 1999, Japanese Prime Minister Obuchi Keiz&o dedicated a major new building in Tokyo named the Sh&owakan. In his brief remarks, Obuchi reminded his audience that the generation that experienced the hardships of wartime and endured the immediate postwar era is now aging. He reiterated in tones of regret .”the experiences of those times are eroding.“ The prime minister of Japan stated that, ”In order to accurately convey the experiences and facts of that era, the need for historical documents and materials is thus made even more acute. ”1 Costing nearly 12.3 billion yen, or more than U.S.100 million, and taking two decades from its inception to this day of dedication, the Sh&owakan is to be the repository and site for the display of such materials.


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